Long-term Health Effects of Childhood Glyphosate Exposure

April 13, 2023
1:00 pm US Eastern Time

mykhailo pavlenko


Rates of youth liver disease and metabolic disorders have increased dramatically in recent decades. Dr. Brenda Eskenazi will present the results of a long-term study examining possible links between glyphosate exposure and liver disease and metabolic disorders. Glyphosate is the most widely-used broad-spectrum herbicide in the world.

The researchers followed 480 mother-child pairs from pregnancy through age 18. They also gathered additional data through a nested case-control study, in which they examined 60 young adults with elevated levels of certain liver enzymes and compared them with 91 young adults with normal levels of those enzymes.

The mother-child pairs were enrolled and studied through the Center for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children of Salinas (CHAMACOS). This study focused on primarily farmworker families in the Salinas Valley, California, and children born between 2000 and 2002. 

The researchers measured urinary levels of glyphosate and a breakdown product of glyphosate, AMPA. Urine samples were collected during pregnancy and when the children reached the ages of 5, 14, and 18. The researchers also estimated the amount of glyphosate applied within a one-kilometer radius around each home from pregnancy through age 5, using pesticide application data reported to the state of California. When the children reached the age of 18, the researchers measured liver enzyme levels and markers of metabolic syndrome.

Urinary markers of glyphosate and AMPA exposure in childhood were associated with elevated liver enzymes and elevated risk of metabolic syndrome. Living near agricultural glyphosate applications between birth and age 5 was also associated with metabolic syndrome at age 18. The researchers conclude that childhood glyphosate exposure may increase risk of liver and metabolic disorders in young adults.

This webinar will be moderated by Sarah Howard of the Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies (HEEDS) program of Environmental Health Sciences.

Featured Speaker

Brenda Eskenazi, PhD directs the Center for Environmental Research and Community Health (CERCH, cerch.berkeley.edu) at the School of Public Health, University of California at Berkeley. She is the Distinguished Jennifer and Brian Maxwell Professor Emeritus of Maternal and Child Health and Epidemiology. Dr. Eskenazi is a neuropsychologist and epidemiologist whose long-standing research interest has been the effects of the environmental factors on human reproduction (both male and female) and child development. Her work has included the potential health effects of numerous toxicants on a wide spectrum of child health outcomes. Her work has a community-based participatory research focus, and she has been instrumental in illustrating the health conditions of farmworker families through the long-standing CHAMACOS project. Professor Eskenazi was awarded the prestigious John R. Goldsmith award from the International Society of Environmental Epidemiology for lifetime achievement in environmental epidemiology.  


This webinar is hosted by the EDC Strategies Partnership, which is co-chaired by Sharyle Patton (Commonweal Biomonitoring Resource Center), Jerry Heindel and Sarah Howard (Environmental Health Sciences' Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies HEEDS), Génon Jensen (Health and Environment Alliance, HEAL), and Rachel Massey (Commonweal CHE, Collaborative on Health and the Environment). To see a full list of past calls and webinars related to EDCs and listen to or view recordings, please visit our partnership page.